Skip to main content

tv   Matter of Fact With Soledad O Brien  NBC  December 6, 2020 5:00am-5:30am PST

5:00 am
>> right now on "matter of fact" -- >> my daughter is bilaterally blind. she is developmentally delayed. she has epilepsy. >> a mother's heartbreaking struggle to teach her disabled daughter at home. she's one of the millions of parents fighting to make sure her child isn't left behind. >> many people have called this the lost year. >> we explore what it takes to regain what's lost. then -- >> we either had to sell the house or elevate the house. >> families desperate to save their homes from being washed away. the big idea america's coastal cities hope will combat climate change.
5:01 am
plus, how do you create upward mobility for people just getting by? >> you will see a hydraulic track, a rock-climbing wall. >> they don't need a track facility. they need their house repaired. >> and how strangers could find out your covid-19 test results. soledad: i'm soledad o'brien. welcome to "matter of fact." nine months into covid-19 shutdowns, schools across the country remain a patchwork of in-person, remote, and hybrid teaching models. parents filling the role of teachers are stretched thin. education experts say in-person instruction is a critical part of child development and even more important for children with complex disabilities. in the current environment, schools are struggling to meet the legal requirements that guarantee services to special needs students. for their parents, a return to school would provide significant
5:02 am
relief, but many find themselves weighing the risks versus the benefits. >> yes, yes. henry planted crops. my name is shanice nicole lyons-linares. and my daughter is victoria nicole lyons, and she's 11 years old. my daughter is bilaterally blind. she is developmentally delayed. she has epilepsy. she's 11 years old, but she's only on the level of a 10-month-old, so she's non-verbal and she requires 24-hour care. prior to the pandemic, she would wake up in the morning about 6:00 a.m., and she would get on the bus between 6:30 and 6:45 to head to the bronx to lavelle school for the blind. she would have occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy in combination with feeding therapy.
5:03 am
she would also have musical therapy, adaptive pe, which is adapted physical education. now things are definitely different. she now has all of those things, but it's in combination with mom and an ipad. in the beginning, it was hard because i was working remotely and doing the schooling remotely. you have to be sitting with her for every single lesson. you have to do hands-on with her every single lesson. so that was overwhelming. it was extremely overwhelming. but then i went to become furloughed, receiving unemployment, which is not even close to what i was making at work. and now i'm doing the remote learning fully, and it made me much happier to know that my daughter is safe, but i'm still struggling financially. so it's like a catch-22. there are some parents who have to go to work.
5:04 am
there are some parents who are not furloughed, and they need to send their kids to school, so i understand the necessity. but it's a big risk because these same children don't have the same immune system as everybody else. they have so many more challenges. and if they do get sick, they may not make it out of it. it was very disheartening in the beginning, but at the end of the day, i pray on it and i know that things will work out. soledad: dr. matthew blomstedt is a national advocate for special needs education. he is the nebraska commissioner of education and the president of the council of chief state school officers. so nice to have you, sir. thanks for talking with me. many people have called this the lost year for students overall, but i think maybe particularly for kids who have special needs. what exactly literally is being lost, do you think?
5:05 am
>> for me, it's really the opportunity that's lost. and that time in school and that that time with even other students is the challenge that we're going to have to overcome. hopefully as we enter the spring and use the summer, to really be able to compensate for the lost the lost opportunities for our students. soledad: the law requires, as you well know, that students in public schools, that their needs be met. is it feasible, really? because a lot of the parents i talk to feel like their kid is just not being educated and certainly not to the level they're supposed to be. >> in special ed law, there is compensatory education so that the opportunities that are lost for all students also have to be regained in some fashion for special ed students. and some of those things are lost in part just because our students with special needs need that extra hands-on attention that they might otherwise be receiving. we are going to have to find ways to do that even more effectively coming out of the pandemic.
5:06 am
soledad: i fully recognize that you're not an epidemiologist, as i asked this question. but i'm curious what you think is when we start turning the corner and coming out the other side. >> i think this is a legitimate threat for the rest of the school year and maybe even into the summer for certain populations, and i don't know exactly what the vaccine kind of rollout will look like across the country, much less even in nebraska. but i do sense that we're going to have these other protocols in place. soledad: i think people often talk about education and special education, maybe even specifically, as a schools issue or a parent and schools issue, and not frequently as a community issue. >> what we have learned through the pandemic, that the pandemic itself is a community issue, that behaviors at a community level impact our ability to sustain services, both in schools and hospitals and other places that are that are critical. i'm really also an advocate for our students in juvenile justice and other places. it's been a challenge in those
5:07 am
settings, as well. many of them have iep's and special needs. i do hope that in the long run, the school and community relationship is actually strengthened through this pandemic. and we have this chance to actually -- once again, kind of revisit that. and the fact that, especially in the public schools, it means public because it's for the public good. soledad: dr. plumstead, thank you for talking with me. >> yeah, it's great to be with you. >> coming up, making over a historic american city. >> we are going to give you hope by building a fancy building. >> and why your next burger could come from -- the ocean? pampers, the #1 pediatrician recommended brand, helps keep baby's skin dry and healthy. so every touch is as comforting as the first. pampers. the #1 pediatrician recommended brand . hey!
5:08 am
yeah!? i switched to geico and got more! more savings on car insurance!? they helped with homeowners, too! ok! plus motorcycle, boat and rv insurance! geico's got you covered! like a blanket! houston? you seeing this? geico. expect great savings and a whole lot more. olay regenerist faced 131 premium products, is skincare from around the world better than olay? from 12 countries, over 10 years. olay's hydration was unbeaten every time. face anything. find out more at
5:09 am
soledad: welcome back to "matter of fact." every major city in america faces the same challenge. how to ease poverty and create upward mobility for communities of color. for the past two years, we've
5:10 am
been following a $1 billion revitalization project in the heart of louisville, kentucky's, black community, the west end. development is well under way. but the aftermath of the police killing breonna taylor, coupled with the spread of covid-19, has created a tension in the community. in our latest installment of russell rising, we head back to the community already skeptical about who will benefit from these changes and concerned that development is a code word for displacement. >> it is actually turning into a beautiful day. soledad: when i first met sadiqa reynolds of louisville's urban league, she'd just begun the fight to reclaim the west end from years of blight and neglect. >> black people deserve to prosper. we deserve to have an opportunity to live in the place where we have really suffered and sacrificed, to watch it grow and watch it become something better. soledad: her neighborhood was once a thriving place full of
5:11 am
black-owned businesses, but the city demolished the commercial strip, jobs disappeared, and hardship took its toll. one in every five properties here is abandoned, and unemployment and poverty rates are more than double the city average. but on this day, sadiqa reynolds had a vision for a major new development she hoped would bring her neighborhood back -- an indoor track and learning complex built with public and private funds on 24-acres of abandoned brownfields donated by the city. what do you see? >> i see so much hope and so much opportunity. i see these buildings. i see action. i see kids coming. you know, i just see so much hope for our future. really excited about it. soledad: take a walk with me. >> ok. soledad: whoo, it's been two years. so where are we? >> the field is gone.
5:12 am
now there's a huge building. look at this place. i mean, the ceilings are huge. this is exciting, but this is nothing compared to what it will be. you will see a hydraulic track, a rock-climbing wall. you'll see two multipurpose rooms that we can use for education. you can have a 5,000-seat concert. if there's one overarching goal , it is really to bring hope, inspiration, and economic opportunity into that community. soledad: construction is happening across the west end. there's a new ymca, new commercial spaces, and 640 new mixed-income apartments where louisville's largest public housing project once stood. >> you move into the bedroom, one-bedroom unit, two closets. soledad: roughly half of the units will be low cost. but the west end still has a massive shortage of affordable housing and a long list of other vexing problems. >> i've seen a building go up, but the crime is the same.
5:13 am
the murder rate is the same. the unemployment is the same. soledad: pam haines owns sweet peaches, a restaurant on the west end. born and raised in the neighborhood, she's one of many residents skeptical of development. >> all they doing is bringing big fancy buildings. how can these people down here afford to patronize these places if they don't have any money? [chanting -- breonna taylor] soledad: support for development has also been hurt by the controversy surrounding breonna taylor's death here in a botched home raid by police. [chanting -- back the blue] soledad: and on top of all of this was covid-19. >> it has been an exhausting summer. this is not the world that i meant to bring my kids to. and this is not the way -- i refuse to leave this for them to clean up. >> i think we got a winner right here.
5:14 am
soledad: pam haines is helping out by serving free meals three days a week. development, she fears, isn't addressing current needs. >> you're welcome, baby. these people, they need food on the table. >> thank you, ma'am. >> they need their house repaired. they don't need a track facility. what kind of hope have we given to these people? we are going to give you hope by building a fancy building, and we are going to hope that you leave. >> we cannot have displacement , and also, we have to build more affordable housing, soledad, really, really, really low rent housing and apartments. we've got to have more units in the city. soledad: the sports and learning complex is expected to generate $16 million in annual revenue. all in the hopes of attracting more business and more opportunity to the west end. >> what do you do? do you say we're going to leave it, just leave it blank, leave
5:15 am
that land there like it is? or do you say we've got to come up with something to help to generate authentically and organically economic development? soledad: coming up, will families be forced to abandon their homes in the fight against climate change? >> the result of sea level rising, this bank is being eaten away. >> or will cities find a way to wall off the ocean? plus, tracking covid-19. hey phone
5:16 am
5:17 am
soledad: it's hard to put a number on the cost of climate
5:18 am
change, but noaa, the national oceanic atmospheric association, says think of it this way -- each weather and climate event in the u.s. this year alone cost $1 billion each. while south carolina had a mild hurricane season, people there know it's not time to get complacent. with seas rising and storms growing stronger, both fueled by climate change, charleston, the low-lying port city, is at risk risk -- risk for flooding, even when there is no hurricane. now the army corps of engineers has plans to protect the city from the ocean, by building a wall eight miles long and 12 feet above sea level. but environmental advocates say the nearly $2 billion investment should be used to elevate and fortify existing homes. correspondent jessica gomez traveled to charleston before the pandemic to see how people are planning for the next big storm. jessica: charleston, south carolina, a place developed around water, dependent on
5:19 am
water, and now defending itself against water. this biology professor says -- >> what is happening here is a result of sea level rising. this bank is being eaten away. >> there is actually dirt inside all of the wells because the foundation is sinking. jessica: ana zimmerman -- her home flooded in 2015. two years later, when hurricane irma hit, she knew it was time to leave. like much of the charleston area, it was built on filled marshland. >> the house just fills with water, and is -- it is dirty water, and it starts to bury everything and you realize you cannot save everything. jessica: while the city is spending millions on projects like fortifying its sea walls and improving drainage systems, it's wrestling with how to handle the thousands of people moving to charleston every year. critics say it hasn't pumped the brakes fast enough on new
5:20 am
development, fill and build communities that make the flooding problem worse for those around them. some, like margaret peery, who lives with her special needs son, are taking matters into their own hands. her home, the first in charleston's iconic historic district to be elevated, six feet higher than it was before. >> we either had to sell the house or elevate the house. well, who is going to buy the house? who is going to buy a house under construction that has water in it? jessica: this is all original house? >> yeah. jessica: builder buz morris says it was a complicated and costly process, about $400,000 but now dozens more projects like it are underway, as flooded historic homes are losing value. >> people are looking at that from a money standpoint. they're saying if my home is going down 10%, 20%, 30%, so is it worth putting in the money to raise it?
5:21 am
jessica: money that many of those on charleston's east side don't have. an area challenged by flooding and gentrification. derrick milligan, his mom has lived here for 80 years, her neighbors not so lucky. >> they're being forced out because they don't have flood insurance so they can't get the renovations they need. jessica: many, left to the mercy of nonprofits, like the sustainability institute, which helps weatherproof homes for those who can't afford it, like bedridden tom jefferson. charleston's vulnerable population most at risk. >> there are so many homeowners that need help and don't have the means to afford the types of upgrades they would need in order to fortify their homes and protect them against these weather events. jessica: weather events, scientists say, that are here to stay. >> if we stopped emitting co2 today, it would take over 100 years for the atmosphere to cleanse itself and get back to pre-industrial levels. it is like trying to turn around a great big ship, it's like how
5:22 am
do you slow an aircraft carrier and make a u-turn? jessica: leaving a city racing against time, forced to adapt to tides of change. in charleston, south carolina, for "matter of fact," i'm jessica gomez. >>, if you already had a form of covid-19 protection in the palm of your hand, would you use it? (soft music) hey dad, i'm about to leave. don't forget your hat . good morning. how can i help? i need help connecting with my students. behind every last minute save, ok, that works. and holiday surprise, thank you! a customer service rep is working unseen, making it happen.
5:23 am
and at genesys, we're proud to help them help you everyday.
5:24 am
soledad: with covid-19 cases exploding, health officials in 15 states are turning to cell technology to slow the spread of the disease, using bluetooth on apple and android phones, state health departments can send a pop-up notification if you get close to someone who tested positive for covid-19. the apps have to be enabled on your phone and their phone to work. so if you are curious if you have the app, look under settings on your phone.
5:25 am
there you are going to find exposure notifications. to turn that on, you have to log your location. then you are going to need to agree to terms set by your local health authority. if you're worried about privacy, the developers say no personal data about you or your phone can be shared through the app. >> coming up, how the next big food trend could kelp save the planet. the medicare enrollment deadline is only days away, and there's so many unanswered questions. like, do you know if your plan is still the right fit? having the wrong medicare plan can cost you thousands and that's why i love healthmarkets: your insurance marketplace. what if you didn't have to shop for health insurance again? healthmarket's fitscore forever promise is the answer. it continuously scans the market to compare your plan against any new options, year after year, while helping answer all your medicare questions like, does your plan have no copays, no deductibles or $0 premiums? healthmarkets has the answer. does your plan offer dental and vision coverage?
5:26 am
how about hearing aids, glasses, wellness visits, and even telemedicine at no additional cost? healthmarkets has the answers. find the answer from the number one ranked health insurance agency in america. your insurance marketplace, healthmarkets. call now.
5:27 am
soledad: if you are wondering what to have for dinner tonight, how about a kelp burger? mmm. kelp, as in seaweed. what some say could be the next big trend when it comes to meat substitutes. the sudden rise in popularity is twofold. first, potential health benefits. the underwater crop is rich in vitamins and minerals. second, the impact on the environment. kelp doesn't need fertilizer or pesticides to grow and helps clean the carbon and nitrogen in the oceans.
5:28 am
currently, maine is the center for kelp entrepreneurs in the u.s., many developing underwater farms along the northeast coast. that's it for this edition of "matter of fact." i am solid at o'brien. --i am soledad o'brien. i will see you back here next week. >> listen to "matter of fact with soledad o'brien" on apple podcasts and spotify. ♪
5:29 am
5:30 am
today on "asian pacific america" we focus on the make-a-wish greater bay area organization and how it tries to make youngsters' wishes come true and how you can be a part of it with giving tuesday coming up. i'm robert handa, your host for our show on nbc bay area and cozi-tv. this is "asian pacific america." so to start off our show, which we are dedicating to the make-a-wish foundation and all the different things that go with it we are joined by the ceo of the


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on